Classic Summer Recipes with Better Ingredients

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This summer, I have been loving easy recipes that I can whip up time and time again. The focus has been on enjoying classic summer foods that I actually want to eat, but with better ingredients.

When I think about classic American summer food, I think about pasta salads, chicken sandwiches, and milkshakes. However, the problem with those foods is they bring all the comfort without any nutrition. Instead, I like to upgrade ingredients rather than eliminate!

The recipes below primarily include ingredients that you can swap out and upgrade for a more nutritious summer. So have fun and develop your personal taste pallet!

Check out some of my favs below which include paid links to specific ingredients:


Veggie Packed Pasta Salad

This is not your average store-bought pasta salad.

Pasta salads often get a bad rap because if you look at the ingredients, they are often packed with preservatives, filler oils, low-quality ingredients, and lots of inflammatory gunk that our bodies don’t need.

Instead, I love using high-quality ingredients for more nutrition and a better taste profile. I love to meal prep this salad in batches and store it in the fridge for the perfect snack on a hot summer day.


Gluten-free Pasta from Jovial Foods

Avocado Oil Mayo from Primal Kitchen

Dijon Mustard from Organicville

Chopped English Cucumber (the crunchiest)

Fresh Scallions

Kalamata Olives


EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) from Braggs 

Pink Himalayan Salt

Black Pepper



Superclean Green Smoothie

Why have a milkshake when you can have this?

This past year, being mindful of blood sugar regulation has made all the difference between feeling good after a meal or feeling off.

I have learned that a *little* sweetness goes a long way, and it’s always a good idea to balance a sweet smoothie with tons of greens and a nice fat. I love throwing coconut yogurt into my smoothies as they are SO filling without the bloat!

This recipe is inspired by one of my fav wellness bloggers, Beth Bollinger at Nest Wellness. If you’re looking for blood sugar-stabilizing smoothie inspo, she is your girl! Check out her easy guide here:

Nest Wellness Smoothie Guide


Curry Chicken Salad on Sourdough Crackers

Chicken salad that doesn’t just taste like mayo

I love snacking! – Intentionally.

And an easy way to do this, is to upgrade your ingredients to serve a purpose. I love this curry chicken salad because it is flavorful, nutritious, and anti-inflammatory all in one.

With high-quality ingredients like non-irradiated curry powder and avocado oil; you can seriously never go wrong.

Enjoy these little bites of goodness while still getting your nutrition in!


Pasture-raised pulled chicken breast

Avocado Oil Mayo from Primal Kitchen

Curry powder from Frontier Co-op 

Crushed walnuts



Red Onion

Lime Juice

Pink Himalayan salt

Oh, and let’s not forget the crackers!

Sourdough Rye Thins from Finn Crisp


Have a happy & healthy rest of Summer!

Goldie W.